SHANGHAI, Mar. 28 (SMM) --
According to the China Nonferrous Metals Industry Association (CNIA), China’s alumina output was 2.59 million mt during February, with an annualized capacity of 33.7 million mt/yr, up over 1.6 million mt/yr compared to January’s 32.09 million mt/yr. Operating rates at domestic aluminum producers have improved gradually since the start of 2011, and their subsequent demand for alumina is creating incentives of alumina producers to increase capacity. SMM predicts alumina output will continue to increase as the amount of domestic aluminum capacity in operation also grows.
Operating rates at aluminum producers have improved since late 2010. According to an SMM survey, aluminum producers in Guangxi province resumed production slowly in January and February due to power supply shortages during the low-water period. However, SMM predicts operating rates at aluminum producers in Guangxi province will increase in April with the start of the high-water period. Aluminum producers in Henan province which were previously affected by energy conservation and emission reduction policies have now gradually resumed normal operations. New capacity in Xinjiang and Qinghai provinces has been put into production as well. According to the latest data from the CNIA, the annualized capacity of aluminum output in January and February increased MoM, confirming results previously predicted by SMM.
According to the CNIA, China's output of aluminum semis during February was 1.60 million mt, up 45.2% from the 1.10 million mt output during the same period in 2010. The YoY growth rate has approached record highs and is a sign that China's aluminum consumption has turned upward. China's aluminum semis output in February fell by 7.9% MoM due mainly to fewer working days in February as a result of the Chinese New Year holiday.
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